Nightly News   |  April 13, 2013

Movie pays tribute to Jackie Robinson

For many baseball fans, the number 42 holds an almost sacred significance. So it's only fitting that  Jackie Robinson’s story would one day be immortalized in a big-budget Hollywood film. NBC’s Rehema Ellis reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> for many baseball fans the number 42 holds a sacred significance, the man who wore it changed the face of america's past time and helped to change the face itself. it's only fitting that jackie robinson 's story would be immortalized in a big budget film.

>> jackie robinson marked the end of all white baseball his journey remembered for the first time in a major hollywood movie with new comer, chadwick boseman.

>> you want to make sure to get it right for all the people that view him as a hero. you know that children will be introduced to him based upon your performance.

>> reporter: can and the film chronicles a painful time in american history as robinson endured racist slurs and violence from players.

>> fires it over to first.

>> reporter: his widow, rachel, now 90 years old, in an interview to air on sunday's "meet the press," remembers her husband as a pioneer.

>> anything that he did that was contrary to what was expected might destroy the opportunity, so he was careful, and patient in his behavior on the field and off the field.

>> reporter: the star athlete opened doors of t s of tun -- doors of opportunity for other african-americans. how important is it that they are playing on a field named after jackie robinson , when most of them do not know who he was?

>> that is right, we are excited about the movie coming out so it will help us teach the history.

>> reporter: robinson's history resonates for this 8-year-old.

>> white men did not like to play with black men, but he overcame the challenges and became one of the greatest baseballplayers.

>> reporter: the movie celebrates the player